On September 1st, 2016 I began renting my house. But I never moved in.
Disclaimer: The following tells the true story of a home improvement project while offering a satirical look at my love life. Not all details in the analogy translate to reality. I’ll leave it to you to guess which are true and which are just funny.
I have had a caulk problem for a while now. The old stuff stopped doing its job a long time ago and I hadn’t had the attention or the energy to look for a solution.
Finally, late last year, I asked for help. I put in a request with property management. What I got was a mess. Literally. After he came by, I found caulk smeared everywhere. On the shower curtain, ground into my bath mat, even on the trash can! It was a sloppy rush job. What’s worse is that the caulk didn’t even do what it was supposed to. He hadn’t bothered to fully clean and prep the area. There were holes where it didn’t completely fill the gap. Other areas, it filled initially but later shrank and left empty.
I tried to ignore it because the whole thing was such a hassle. But after a while I got sick of staring at it.
So one day I finally headed out to Lowe’s to find a solution. My shopping list was caulk & bulbs. The bulbs were for my Himalayan salt lamp. The old bulb had burnt out after several years of giving me perfect sleepy-selfie lighting. They were a little hard to find because there were so many similar varieties, but I managed to grab the right ones to flatter my face. Wandering through the aisles, I found the caulk solution I’d been considering – Magic Caulk. It was a hard plastic caulk that was supposed to replace real caulk in a no hassle way. Simply figure out the desired length, clean the application area and push the caulk into place. Aside from a somewhat picky cleaning protocol, the only downside was having to wait 8 hours for it to bond before you could use it.
Given the long wait time, I put it off for a while until I couldn’t stand it any longer. I took out the packaging, gave the instructions a good long look, and went to work. Getting the right angles wasn’t easy in certain spots and it was hard to get it straight in the gap sometimes. The end result wasn’t the prettiest thing but it looked like we were in business. I waited until it was ready to go.
When I was ready to test it out, much to my dismay, I found the caulk was already drooping. Some places it’d come off altogether while other spots were sadly sagging. Clearly this hard plastic caulk wasn’t as magical as it claimed. I was frustrated and so over dealing with the problem. One long piece was entirely in place & the others would go back in with some pushing. A partial solution was better than nothing.
My next trip to Lowe’s, my shopping list was caulk & blocks. The blocks were to repair my bed after 2 out of 3 middle support legs had failed. I needed my bed to stop caving in the middle when I used it. The caulk itself wasn’t hard to find – I knew I needed it to be white, non-shrinking, and have a shorter turn around time than the Magic Caulk. I found a decent looking tube rather quickly.
I needed a way to use it, so I set off in search for a caulk gun. (Oddly enough, they aren’t kept with the plumbing caulk.) Searching down the aisle, every caulk gun was just completely unreasonable in size. The type of caulk gun you see people using professionally. Thankfully when I mentioned my situation to a friend, he was able to hook me up with a gun that was the right size for the job.
Once again, I procrastinated getting a handle on it. It felt like a lot of work. Then I saw a friend on FB post that he’d just taken care of his caulk and it inspired me to tackle mine. I was going for a blended method because the plastic caulk on the long side of the tub was holding up.
Quickly, I stripped and prepped the areas. I made sure the cut was thick enough and got to work. Trying not to waste it, playing with positioning to hit the right angles. I tried not to make a mess. My hands got sticky but I managed not to get any in my hair. I kept a supply of towels nearby for clean up. In the end, it wasn’t perfect but I didn’t think perfect caulk was worth the effort. I thought I’d done a pretty good job for someone with limited experience caulking.
The entire thing start to finish was faster than I expected, but not in a bad way. It claimed to be ready to work in 30 minutes but I decided to give it longer. (Those estimates are always optimistic.) I checked it out during my shower an hour or so later. I touched a few spots, looked from a few angles and everything seemed to check out. Now to see if it holds up over time!
PS: If you enjoyed this tongue in cheek silliness, check out Realtor.com is Tinder for Houses from back when I first re-entered the dating scene. (Spoiler alert : I have still found neither house nor spouse. I’m waiting until the right opportunities comes along, ones worth investing in.)
No one get excited, I am not saying I’ve got some sort of magic touch in BJJ. I’m not even good at BJJ, much less magical.
What’s on my mind lately is “positive touch” and how BJJ provides that contact we social creatures crave so much. And how much that’s helped me personally in the last year or so. I found myself telling my “touch-starved” story twice recently and it dawned on me just how much BJJ had helped me.
So, disclaimer – I hadn’t had a roommate since literally half my lifetime ago. Even down to the time of year. Fall ’99, I had my one and only roommate experience. We spent one semester driving each other nuts until she moved to one of the apartments available to lower classmen.
“Better safe than sorry” – it might be good advice for packing or obeying traffic laws, but Lzzy Hale would argue it should not be applied to romantic relationships. And I agree. Safe isn’t bad. Safe is comfortable. There is nothing wrong with comfortable … unless that comfort is kept out of fear and you’re struggling to keep your own fire stoked.
A few months back I saw Paranoid Social Club live for the first time in a long time and was reminded of how much I love this song. PSC’s songs tend to be on the upbeat and playful side of my alt-spectrum. They are an ass-shaking, head-banging good time. But this one goes a little further.
What is Two Girls? It’s Ludacris’s “lady in the street but a freak in the bed” concept expanded upon in glorious and catchy detail. It lays out the dichotomy of what men desire in a woman with a sweet surprise at the end.Continue reading SoML: Two Girls
Body image has been on my mind a lot lately. Between my brief return to dating, recovering from my broken leg, I have spent a lot of time (unintentionally or not) thinking about my body and how it is perceived.
My struggle with body image is not typical. To give you an idea of where I’m coming from, I’ll give a little history – I will try to keep it brief. Continue reading The Skinny on My Healthy Body
I’ve moved 3 times since leaving the “house formerly known as home” – a way stop at my parents’ for 3 weeks until I moved into the snowbird’s for 5 months and then back to my parents’ for (hopefully only) 5 months. Moving 3 times within 6 months to places where I can only have a subset of my “stuff” has taught me a few things. Continue reading Operation: You Can’t Go Home (Nomad Edition)
Note: A briefer version of this story was going to be told on the Jay Jack Uncensored podcast when they talked about the need for gameness in women and how society typically squelched that trait. But, between my accident and the podcast’s “squirrel!” attention span for topics, I decided that I’d go ahead and publish this anyways. Maybe we’ll still go over the idea on a future JJU episode. But I needed to tell my story while the last bit was still fresh in my mind.
This all starts with a foolish summer fling in 2001. I met a guy working security at a concert, we hit off, we spent the summer having some fun together. I made it clear from the beginning that this was just going to be a summer thing, I was headed back to Ithaca in the fall for my junior year of college. I like to think that I ignored any signs that he was a little “off” because it was just a summer thing so it didn’t really matter. I wasn’t looking for a life partner. He was sweet, he was fun, and that was all that mattered at the time.